Exterior piano damage may be a sign that there is interior damage as well. If a piano has not been taken care of on the outside, there is a good chance that the interior was not properly cared for. Exterior piano damage not only lowers the aesthetic value, but also may be an indicator of serious interior damage.
Here are some exterior things to look at when considering a used piano.
1. Cracks in the finish. Cracks in the finish are usually a sign of damage caused by humidity. As you probably know, pianos should be kept away from high humidity and fluctuating temperatures! If weather damage has affected the exterior of a piano, you can bet there will be interior damage as well. Make sure and check all sides of the piano for cracks or discoloration.
2. Chipped or crooked keys. The keys on a piano are what get used the most. They can handle quite a bit of wear and tear, but pianos can last decades if properly cared for. A piano whose keys are showing signs of aging mean the piano probably does not have many years left in it or it was not properly cared for in the first place.
3. Keys that don?t play proper sound. Pianos will be out of tune; that?s normal and fixable, but there are some abnormal signs to look out for. Notes that do not hold their length, keys that make no sound at all, keys that sound like two notes playing at once and buzzing sounds when striking a key. You should always test a couple notes before purchasing a piano.
Remember that any external piano damage could be a sign of more serious internal issues. Odds are if the piano was not cared for on the outside, it was not cared for on the inside either. If you?re unsure about what to look for when purchasing a piano, bring a friend along who knows more about the instrument than you.